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Category >> Captain Easy

Daily OCD: 7/12-13/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Taking Punk to the MassesShimura TakakoRoy CranereviewsMomemangaLeslie SteinJohnny RyanJoe SaccoJim WoodringHans RickheitDaily OCDCaptain Easyaudio 13 Jul 2011 7:13 PM

Ran out of time to finish yesterday's Online Commentary & Diversions so here's a two-fer:

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "With skill, restraint and a deep sensitivity to the roiling emotions involved, Shimura relates the tale of fifth-grade boy Shuichi, who wants to be a girl, and his classmate Yoshino, a girl who wants to be a boy. This is the first volume of the Japanese saga [Wandering Son] to be published in English, and translator Thorn does great work parsing the complex gender honorifics of the Japanese language. We only just begin to get to know our two leads, but Shimura's approach allows us to feel their confusion, their heartache and — when a perceptive mutual friend orchestrates a plan that starts them down the road to self-acceptance — their quiet, nervous joy." – Glen Weldon, NPR - Monkey See

Review: "Gender roles and cross-dressing are often fodder for laughs in anime and manga, but this is the most serious and thoughtful take I've seen on the subject. And I love how Shimura doesn't make things too angsty for the characters. Maybe that will come later, but for now it's more of a quiet discomfort -- the reader is finding out at the same time as the characters, and it's quite touching. ...Wandering Son is a tender take on a taboo subject. I wish it success in the American market." – Eric Henrickson, The Detroit News - Geek Watch

Review: "Wandering Son by Shimura Takako is a heartfelt story of two people who I desperately feel for and for their families and friends.... The main thing that drew me to this book was the fact that unlike a lot of western media that plays off the fact that a transgender teenager would have to deal with their friends and peers ostracising or bullying them for being different, Wandering Son goes straight for the heart, tackling the more important idea of how the person in the story feels. Reading the first volume, I can feel their awkwardness at them coming to the decision that they are different from other people and that they need to do something about it.... I want to be alongside these characters as they discover who and how they are. I want to see them triumph in ways that many of us never get to. Most of all, I want to be there at the end even if it ends in failure." – Eeeper's Choice

Review (Audio): Phillip of Eeper's Choice, Erica Friedman, and David Welsh (The Manga Curmudgeon) discuss Wandering Son Vol. 1 with hosts Ed Sizemore and Johanna Draper Carlson on the Manga Out Loud podcast. At Manga Worth Reading, Carlson notes "We talk about the value of translation/cultural end notes (which inspired a followup post by David) and the pacing of the series in light of Takako Shimura’s career. It’s a wonderful read that we all enjoyed and recommend."

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937)

Review: "Collected in oversize hardbacks that present the pages at their original size, these beautiful books restore one of the original adventure heroes of the strips -- the affable (albeit two-fisted) mercenary who was much more interested in excitement than money or women, which is what he was supposedly after. [Captain] Easy moved through a more innocent — and largely unexplored — world, and there's no better word for this adventure strip than 'charming.'" – Andrew A. Smith, Scripps Howard News

Eye of the Majestic Creature

Review: "...Leslie Stein is a young lady out of Brooklyn, NY who has been crafting literary/illustrative dub versions of her tastes and trials and laying them out in meticulously crafted yet still oodles-of-eye-fun anecdotes and tall tales. Fanta has collected them all into Eye of the Majestic Creature, a big-sized anthology of her work, with color covers and B&W insides and a whole lot of heart reproduced superbly for proper long-term keeping.... Stein's easy-on-the-eyes drawing style shows an affinity for the same greatly defined, goofy universe Pete Bagge's youthful wanderers once trolled though Seattle in... I found it irresistible, and will come back to its gentle humor and delightful glimpses into woozy alt-country gal delights again and again." – Chris Estey, Three Imaginary Girls

Taking Punk to the Masses: From Nowhere to Nevermind - A Visual History from the Permanent Collection of Experience Music Project

Review: "Growing up to this era of punk rock, I feel an initial offense taken to McMurray’s collection of punk rock relics. It seems strange and kitschy to run across a book like Taking Punk to the Masses when you lived it. My first reaction was that we are not a novelty, punk was defined from a purpose and we are that purpose, not an exploitation. But the curious person that I am, I skimmed through it. Then I skimmed through it again. Then I read it. And then I fell in love with it." – Andrew Duncan, ZapTown

The Squirrel Machine

Commentary: At Robot 6, Sean T. Collins comments on the Jim Woodring letter to Hans Rickheit we shared here yesterday: "Woodring, an intrepid chronicler of the underbrain in his own right, clearly recognized a kindred spirit in Rickheit when the younger cartoonist sent him a copy of his elaborate and powerful Fantagraphics graphic novel The Squirrel Machine."

Mome Vol. 19 - Summer 2010

Interview: The Daily Cross Hatch's Brian Heater continues his conversation with Mome editor Eric Reynolds: "My two passions in comics are old strips like Popeye and the great cartoonists that I came of age reading, like Clowes and Charles Burns and the Hernandez Brothers. But, as much as that’s the stuff I dearly love, it’s the new stuff we’re publishing, the new artists, the sort of unexpected things that, on a day to day basis, keep me motivated and keep my interest in publishing, from day to day."

Johnny Ryan

Interview (Audio): Listen to Johnny Ryan's appearance today on the Sara Tea Time podcast

Safe Area Gorazde: The Special Edition

Scene: At El Estupendo Grouchomarxista, Tiago Soares reports (in Portuguese) from a recent São Paolo bookstore appearance by Joe Sacco

Daily OCD: 7/8/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Shimura TakakoRoy CranereviewsPopeyemangaKim DeitchEC SegarDaily OCDCaptain Easy 8 Jul 2011 7:20 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937)

Review: "Though he was one of the genre’s pioneers, Roy Crane’s Captain Easy is arguably the most idiosyncratic of all the adventure strips. But it’s this blend of loud slapstick, young-boys-styled adventure and blatant sex appeal that make Captain Easy such a winning, fun strip to read." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "From any other culture this type of story would be crammed with angst and agony: gratuitously filled with cruel moments and shame-filled subtext, but Takako Shimura’s genteel and winningly underplayed first volume in this enchanting school saga [Wandering Son]... is resplendent with refined contentment, presenting the history in an open-minded spirit of childlike inquiry and accepting optimism that turns this book into a genuine feel-good experience." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

Popeye Vol. 5:

Lore: At Comic Book Resources, Brian Cronin investigates some Popeye-related urban legends

The Search for Smilin' Ed!

Lore: Kim Deitch's "Mad About Music: My Life in Records" column continues over at TCJ.com, with the new fourth installment turning to the early days of rock 'n' roll

Daily OCD: 6/29/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Wilfred SantiagoShimura TakakoRoy CranereviewsmangaLou ReedJim WoodringDave McKeanDaily OCDCaptain Easy21 29 Jun 2011 6:54 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "...[Wandering Son] is absolutely fantastic and deserves every one of the awards it will doubtless win. ...[I]t’s an honest look at what Shu and Yoshino are going through. There’s no magic pool, no funny crossdressing, no easy solution to the dilemma that these two face. What I also like about the series is that its secondary characters are often just as interesting as the main pair: they’re all in fifth grade, after all, when everyone is struggling with their identities and the consequences thereof. Shu and Yoshino just get the worst of it." – Ted Anderson, The Hub (YALSA)

Congress of the Animals

Review: "Woodring’s someone whose work demands repeated reads. For longtime fans, Congress of the Animals is another puzzle piece in Woodring’s complicated world of art. For newcomers, it’s likely going to be the first enjoyable step of discovering that world and Woodring’s back catalogue." – Nick Dean, Skyscraper Magazine

Plug: Seattle Weekly's Brian Miller recommends Jim Woodring's appearance at Elliott Bay Book Company tomorrow evening and says of Congress of the Animals, "Frank's adventures take place in a kind of Byzantine fun-house phantasmagoria of windows-slash-orifices, faces without faces, and extruded intestines. The spirit is like Disney meets Hieronymus Bosch, a comic surrealism in which Frank undergoes an exile and return from his beloved home."

Plug: Gurldoggie also spotlights Jim Woodring's upcoming appearance

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937)

Review: "In this selection [Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune Vol. 2] Roy Crane’s irrepressible humour comes perfectly into focus and this enchanting serial abounds with breezy light-hearted banter, hilarious situations and outright farce... This superb hardback and colossal second collection is the perfect means of discovering or rediscovering Crane’s rip-snorting, pulse-pounding, exotically racy adventure trailblazer. The huge pages in this volume... provide the perfect stage to absorb and enjoy the classic tale-telling of a master raconteur. This is storytelling of impeccable quality: unforgettable, spectacular and utterly irresistible. These tales rank alongside the best of Hergé, Tezuka, Toth and Kirby and unarguably fed the imaginations of them all as he still does for today’s comics creators." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

The Raven

Interview: At New York magazine's Vulture blog, Jennifer Vineyard talks to Lou Reed about adapting Edgar Allen Poe for The Raven (among other topics): "Do you know what it’s like to try to rewrite one of the most famous poems in the history of the world? It’s a can’t-win situation. No one is ever going to say that the rewrite is better than the original. That’s not going to happen."

Celluloid [Pre-Order]

Interview: At the Suicide Girls website, Alex Dueben talks to Dave McKean about his new book Celluloid: "It’s always a bit strange doing something that is exclusively about sex and putting it out for people to look at. There are people who are bound to draw some sort of parallel between you as an individual and the stuff you’re putting in the book, which is not necessarily there to be drawn, but people do. So I tried to keep my identity out of it as much as possible."

21: The Story of Roberto Clemente

Profile: Time Out Chicago's Jonathan Kinkley profiles local boy Wilfred Santiago: "21: The Story of Roberto Clemente is a lovingly written and superbly illustrated biography of the baseball legend.... Stylistically, he considers himself something of a chameleon, tackling each challenge with a new visual approach. 'Actors change accents to play different characters,' says the artist, 'and I have the same graphic flexibility to interpret different kinds of stories.'"

Things to See (and Buy): Paul Pope's original Captain Easy tribute art
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Things to seeRoy CraneOriginal ArtCaptain Easy 23 Jun 2011 6:29 PM

Roy Crane Captain Easy tribute - Paul Pope

If you would like to be the proud owner of the original art for Paul Pope's tribute to Roy Crane which accompanies Pope's terrific introduction to Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune Vol. 2, it is among the original Pope artwork available for sale via The Beguiling.

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 by Roy Crane - intro by Paul Pope

New Comics Day 6/22/11: Captain Easy
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Roy CraneNew Comics DayCaptain Easy 22 Jun 2011 4:28 PM

This week's comic shop shipment is slated to include the following new title. Read on to see what comics-blog commentators and web-savvy comic shops are saying about it (more to be added as they appear), check out our previews at the link, and contact your local shop to confirm availability.

 Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937) by Roy Crane

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937)
by Roy Crane

144-page full-color 10.5" x 14.75" hardcover • $39.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-391-0

Sneak peek at Diamond's PREVIEWSworld website

"The 1936-1937 Sunday installments of Roy Crane's proto-lots-of-things adventure comic strip continue." – Douglas Wolk, Comics Alliance

"...I’d also consider one of the nice collected editions of vintage comics that is coming out this week; the Fantagraphics Captain Easy collection looks tempting..." – Brigid Alverson, Robot 6

"Magnificent color adventure comics from Roy Crane, published as crisply as modern collection technique allow. I'm reading this right now." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

"CONFLICT OF INTEREST RESERVOIR: Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937) will in all likelihood give you what the title indicates, in addition to an illustrated introduction by Paul Pope, an essay by the late Bill Blackbeard and comments by editor Rick Norwood..." – Joe McCulloch, The Comics Journal

Captain Easy Vol. 2 sneak peeks at PREVIEWSworld
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Roy CranepreviewsCaptain Easy 16 Jun 2011 11:09 PM

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/mike/201106/ceasy2-prev4.jpg

It's official: Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune Vol. 2 by Roy Crane is headed to comic shops next week, and Diamond's PREVIEWSworld website has a very excellent selection of pages for you to check out!

Daily OCD: 6/16/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Roy CranereviewsPeter BaggePaul HornschemeierMickey MouseJasonGilbert HernandezFloyd GottfredsonDisneyDaily OCDCaptain Easy 16 Jun 2011 7:22 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1: Race to Death Valley

Review: "...[Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse] is not just a great Mickey Mouse comic, it's one of the best comics of all time.... When Gottfredson took over the Mickey Mouse newspaper strip in 1930, he created stories that still hold up eighty years later as solid well-done comics. That alone would be an incredible achievement, especially considering how few stories from the era even seem readable to a modern audience, but Gottfredson takes things to an entirely different level with comedy that's still funny and adventures that are genuinely thrilling.... As to the book itself, Fantagraphics has done their usual amazing job of design on it... The strips are crisp, there's a ton of bonus material (including biographical information, details on the process, and a bunch of additional strips), and the book even feels nice in your hands while you're reading it. They did a seriously remarkable job putting it together, which is fitting considering how good the material is.... It's a great collection, and one of the few that anyone who likes any sort of comics could — and should — pick up and enjoy." – Chris Sims, Comics Alliance (all emphasis his)

Isle of 100,000 Graves

Review: "It feels like there's been an onslaught of pirate stories in the last several years, but Jason's deadpan visual style mixed with Vehlmann's absurdly dark humor make for a special tale of skullduggery.... Hilarity and adventure ensue, but not without a tremendously affecting and emotionally complicated final scene, making [Isle of 100,000 Graves] a wild ride in the truest sense of the term." – John Seven, Worcester Magazine

Yeah!

Plug: "Legendary writer Bagge (Hate) and artist Hernandez (Love and Rockets) teamed up ten years ago for this comic [Yeah!] about a spunky all-girl, all-universe rock band. Now the whole series has been collected for the punk/sci-fi girl in your life." – Dan Kois, New York

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937)

Plug: The Comics Reporter's Tom Spurgeon points out a favorite line of dialogue from Roy Crane's Captain Easy Vol. 2

Mome Vol. 17 - Winter 2010

Interview: Christopher John Farley has a brief Q&A with Paul Hornschemeier at The Wall Street Journal's Speakeasy blog: "I tend to write far more than I draw, I may have an image pop into my head, but those are usually just isolated points of inspiration: from there the writing takes over."

Now in stock: Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune Vol. 2 by Roy Crane
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Roy Cranenew releasesCaptain Easy 9 Jun 2011 4:03 AM

Just arrived in our warehouse and ready to ship:

 Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937) by Roy Crane

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937)
by Roy Crane

144-page full-color 10.5" x 14.75" hardcover • $39.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-391-0

See Previews / Order Now

This second of four volumes reprints in full color the rare Captain Easy Sunday pages from the 1930s. Roy Crane’s Soldier of Fortune, Captain Easy, fights for gold in the frozen north, is mistaken for a bandit, protects a formula for artificial diamonds, is stranded on a desert island, visits the tiny Balkan country of Kleptomania, and faces a firing squad. Captain Easy hobnobs with millionaires and bums and beautiful girls (of course), and winds up in the middle of a full scale war. In short, it’s another rousing series of adventure and humor encapsulating the gallantry, derring-do, and rough-and-tumble innocence of a bygone era and a bygone genre, written and drawn with panache, and practically painted in a vibrant spectrum of colors that you have to see to believe.

Special features of this volume include a foreword by series editor Rick Norwood, an illustrated introduction by fellow cartoonist and Crane aficionado Paul Pope, an essay by the late Bill Blackbeard, and a gallery of rare Captain Easy comic book covers.

Long before the first superhero, Roy Crane’s courageous, indomitable, and cliff-ganging rough guy served as the template for characters that later defined comic books, and set the aesthetic standards for the newspaper strip. Crane’s mastery is why Peanuts creator Charles Schulz said of him (circa 1989): "A treasure. There is still no one around who draws any better."

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune Vols. 1 and 2

Exclusive Savings: Order Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune Vols. 1 and 2 together and save 20% off the combined cover price!

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune Vol. 2 by Roy Crane - Previews, Pre-Order
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under videoRoy Cranepreviewsnew releasesCaptain Easy 23 May 2011 1:18 AM

 Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937) by Roy Crane

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 2 (1936-1937)
by Roy Crane

144-page full-color 10.5" x 14.75" hardcover • $39.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-391-0

Ships in: June 2011 (subject to change) — Pre-Order Now

This second of four volumes reprints in full color the rare Captain Easy Sunday pages from the 1930s. Roy Crane’s Soldier of Fortune, Captain Easy, fights for gold in the frozen north, is mistaken for a bandit, protects a formula for artificial diamonds, is stranded on a desert island, visits the tiny Balkan country of Kleptomania, and faces a firing squad. Captain Easy hobnobs with millionaires and bums and beautiful girls (of course), and winds up in the middle of a full scale war. In short, it’s another rousing series of adventure and humor encapsulating the gallantry, derring-do, and rough-and-tumble innocence of a bygone era and a bygone genre, written and drawn with panache, and practically painted in a vibrant spectrum of colors that you have to see to believe.

Special features of this volume include a foreword by series editor Rick Norwood, an illustrated introduction by fellow cartoonist and Crane aficionado Paul Pope, an essay by the late Bill Blackbeard, and a gallery of rare Captain Easy comic book covers.

Long before the first superhero, Roy Crane’s courageous, indomitable, and cliff-ganging rough guy served as the template for characters that later defined comic books, and set the aesthetic standards for the newspaper strip. Crane’s mastery is why Peanuts creator Charles Schulz said of him (circa 1989): "A treasure. There is still no one around who draws any better."

Download a 10-page PDF excerpt (5.6 MB).

Video & Photo Slideshow Preview (view in new window):

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune Vols. 1 and 2

Exclusive Savings: Order Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune Vols. 1 and 2 together and save 20% off the combined cover price!

Daily OCD: 4/18/11 (Part 2)
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Roy CranereviewsMomeLove and RocketsLorenzo MattottiJoe DalyJim WoodringIvan BrunettiGilbert HernandezDave McKeanDaily OCDCaptain EasyAbstract Comics 18 Apr 2011 11:59 PM

 Today's Online Commentary & Diversions, continued:

Mome Vol. 1 - Summer 2005

List: In light of the impending end of the anthology, Robot 6's Chris Mautner names "The six best stories in Mome" (to date... there's one issue yet to go)

Love from the Shadows

Review: "Hernandez of Love and Rockets continues his obsessive study of faux Z-movies featuring L&R character Fritz, a lisping, freakishly large-chested post-ingenue. This latest offering [Love from the Shadows] is imaginatively staged, beautifully drawn and deftly dialogued, with odd discordant undertones and psychosexual notes that include incest and insanity." – Richard Pachter, The Miami Herald

Dungeon Quest, Book 2

Review: "More stoner/fantasy silliness from Daly. There seems to be more of a focus on plot and creating lengthy action sequences than in previous. The jokes don’t seem as frequent, or at least are more subtle this time around. [...] Dungeon Quest Book Two is still a fun romp, especially if you’re at all familiar with the fantasy genre or role-playing games in particular." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips Vol. 1 (1933-1935)

Review: "Crane's drawings are clear, simple, rounded. They combine perfectly with the primary colors used in printing newspapers. His characters were drawn more cartoonish than realistic, with free and lightweight lines, without much concern for details. In layout, Crane was able to explore the space of the entire page of the Captain Easy strip, alternating horizontal and vertical panels to get a more dynamic effect. The author also used horizontal panels to show beautiful panoramic images of fights and persecution." – Gustavo Guimaraes, Ambrosia (translated from Portuguese)

Congress of the Animals

Interview: At The Rumpus, Ted Wilson has a fun chat with Jim Woodring: "People sometimes avoid me but not because I am or am not a garbageman. I really have no idea what you are asking. Do people avoid garbagemen? Not in my experience. In fact I learned that some women simply cannot resist a man in any kind of a uniform. I’m not kidding."

Stigmata [Pre-Order - with Special Offer]

Interview: Paul Gravett presents a transcription of the Comica-sponsored conversation between Dave McKean and Lorenzo Mattotti which took place in London last month: "I had read Piersanti’s novels, When he was buying a portfolio of mine, we were introduced. A French publisher wanted a short comic for an anthology about religion, so I asked Claudio because I knew he was interested in philosophy and spiritual problems. He had the idea of a man who finds he has stigmata wounds on his hands and doesn’t know what to do." (via The Comics Reporter)

Cartooning - Philosophy & Practice - Ivan Brunetti

Interview: At The Comics Journal, Ken Parille talks to Ivan Brunetti about teaching comics: "To me, art is not about talent, it’s about hard work. It’s about developing one’s intelligence, thoughtfulness, and sensitivity. To some degree, the potential for these things seems to vary, implying they are perhaps innate, but I think anything can be nurtured (or neglected). Something might not come easy, but it can be learned. It’s matter of will, desire, determination, and hard work."

Abstract Comics: The Anthology

Feature: At the Drawing Words & Writing Pictures blog, Best American Comics series co-editor Matt Madden spotlights Alexey Sokolin's "Life, Interwoven" from the Abstract Comics anthology as a 2010 Notable Comic: "The comic is made entirely of hatching lines, scribbles, swooping lines, and, way down beneath it all, hints of representative imagery. It almost looks like what began as a conventional comic mutated as the marks and lines broke free of the images. It’s also interesting the way the comic can read either as a six page comic, a series of six drawings (a sextich?), or six iterations of the same page being increasingly overwhelmed with line."